DOGOS Reviews

AuthorReview
FullMoonBeaver
702,948 (455,526)
FullMoonBeaver
TA Score for this game: 963
Posted on 07 September 16 at 16:18
This review has 4 positive votes and 0 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Welcome to review for Dogos

Developed by: OPQAM
Published by: OPQAM
Price: £9.59
Release date: September 7th

Developer OPQAM are back with Dogos, and after a luke warm reception to their previous game Project Root, is Dogos going to be more of the same, or have the cracked it with their latest foray in the genre of Shmup's? Having never played Project Root, I cannot comment on that, but Dogos however, is a damn fine game.

You assume the role of a pilot by the name of Desmond Phoenix. Doesn't that just exude a hero like status among his fellow Earthlings? Well, it does for me. Anyway, on to the story behind Dogos. Earth has been invaded by bio-mechanical aliens, the Zeetnuks. It may be a cliche, and may have been done countless times before, but who doesn't like being able to save the planet in a video game? Unless you're the sort that would love to see the world burn of course.

So what have we on offer? Well, there are 14 missions you have to undertake to rid the Earth o the alien menace, and 3 difficulty levels to choose from. Each mission has 3 challenges, such as completing the mission with dying, complete the mission in a set time limit and kill related missions. It's not a long game by any means, and side from completing the 3 challenges per mission, you won't have many other reasons to come back and play the game again. Saying that, the time you will have playing Dogos will be enjoyable, as there is plenty of enemies to dispose of along the way. From ground support, to the flying variety. All of various sizes, and of course, energy shields to navigate your ship through. I hate these shields, and yes, it is because I have flown directly into them after a mistimed attempt to fly through them when they turn off.

In between each mission, you have a spoken segment from Desmond's diary, which is a different addition to a genre such as this. Not something I have come across before, and looks to flesh out the character. The voice acting of Desmond is a bit flat and he does come across a bit uninteresting after all is said and done.

Playing Dogos is an experience that was totally different to me, as you don't have a vertical scrolling levels to play through. You are in full control of your ship, and can explore each level as you see fit. You get full control of the camera too, which I did find disorientating at first, as I was not expecting it, but I soon get used to how the game plays with this method. You get a selection of primary and secondary weapons that unlock the further you advance through the game, and some funky new skins for your ship. These skins are just cosmetic and only serve to look pretty.

The game offers very little challenge on Easy and Medium. You will finish most if not all levels without dying, given the health pick ups the spawn are generous. Not to mention the weapon pick ups. Once you unlock the better weapons for your ship, you will find this a breeze, and find yourself at the end game boss without much trouble. The boss on the other hand is a damage sponge, and will require a lot of bullets and rockets, hell, even the kitchen sink before it goes to the big junkyard in the sky.

Graphics: Visually, Dogos looks great, and even with how the camera is controlled completely by the user, there is no slowdown that I encountered, and no screen tears. Runs smoothly and without complaint from myself.

Music/FX: The music can become a bit boring and tedious after a while, as it is repetitive. But explosions and gun fire do the job just fine. Nothing special or over the top, it functions, and thats all.

Gameplay: The style of play may throw you off guard at first if you have not looked into it, and the sudden automatic flying sections will also catch you by surprise. But a little bit of practice will see you ace these. Controls are easy to get to grips with, and a simple press of the cn_X button will bring up a map overlay on screen so you can plan your route and see important targets which are your missions at hand. Simple and effective.

Longevity: Sadly, there is little reason to come back to Dogos once you complete a run through the 14 missions. Especially if you have already completed each of the 42 challenges. But the price is reasonable, and currently on sale for another week. So the perfect time to make a purchase should you be interested. Fun, but short and lacking in replayability.

Achievements: This is why a lot of people are here. Dogos achievements are relatively easy, and I unlocked 10/15 of them before the list went live. This resulted in only just over half the 1000g available, as a vast chunk of this is tied to completing the game on hard, and completing the challenges. But if you are determined enough, then the 1000g will be yours.

To conclude, Dogos is an enjoyable game, and yes it does have some short comings which have been mentioned, but for the sale price it currently is available for, grab yourself some easy achievements, and you may find that you enjoy the game.

Thank you to OPQAM for supplying the review key.
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x Mataeus x
796,809 (476,665)
x Mataeus x
TA Score for this game: 30
Posted on 11 October 16 at 18:56, Edited on 12 October 16 at 07:03
This review has 4 positive votes and 1 negative vote. Please log in to vote.
Preamble:
Please note I play a lot of these games on my 'review' tag, and often before achievements are live. As with all of my reviews, the verdict below is based purely on my personal time with the game. My reviews are not influenced by general opinions, they do not draw reference to other people’s experiences (unless I’m reviewing couch co-op play), nor are they based on any one particular element; rather they are an account of my own experiences, and as a result are entirely subjective – as they should be! I try to be as spoiler-free as possible, but in the interest of providing an honest account, some reveals may be necessary. Enjoy smile

Please COMMENT if you down vote - I take the time to create these reviews for this community; I'd love your feedback!


Review:
Shoot ’em ups: A classic corner stone of video gaming since the mediums inception. From Space Invaders to R-Type, and progressing to the insane bullet hell games of Japan, piloting an armed craft through alien landscapes whilst blowing the bejeesus out of it’s natives has always been a draw.

Developer OPQAM has obviously played a lot of those titles, and taken on the task of bringing the experience to a new generation of Xbox gamers. Technology has come a long way over the last forty years, however. Is there room for a humble shoot ’em up in the burgeoning Xbox One indie scene?

If DOGOS is it, then I have to say it casually strolls into the scene rather than arriving with a bang. First impressions are actually quite good, once you’ve selected your starting ship from the choice of two available, and find yourself flying at full speed through a canyon of death. It feels similar to the famous ‘trench run’ in Star Wars, although it takes place on terra firma and – like almost the entire game – is viewed from a bird’s eye perspective. The graphics aren’t ground breaking, but the smooth frame rate and simple controls give the impression you’ll be in for an enjoyable ride over the game’s dozen levels. And you are, at first, until you realise you’ve pretty much seen it all a half hour later.

The developers present the game as being an open ended shoot ’em up, but in my opinion this is something of a misnomer. Rather than traditional genre examples which feature forced vertical or horizontal scrolling, DOGOS sees you piloting your ship at your own speed, apart from the odd forced run such as that described above. Thrown into the levels at set spawn points and with set objectives, you’re free to approach them as you wish, and fly around the various fields, engineering plants and enemy bases at your own pace, taking your objectives on as you see fit. This is all well and good, but the game is still split into separate levels as I say, and the objectives are always the same. This means there’s an optimum path through each level so you don’t find yourself needlessly backtracking, and once you find that path, there’s no reason to divert from it.

Flying around is fast, smooth and easy. You don’t have any vertical control over your ship, it’s simply a matter of pushing the left thumbstick in the direction you wish to fly – including strafing – and using the right thumbstick to rotate around. This actually spins the map, or the scenery if you will, rather than the ship. Due to the 60fps gameplay and the speed at which shoot ’em ups require you to move at, you’ll be feeling nauseous by the end of the second level. As you fly around, the embarrassingly named Zeetnuks will be bearing down on you in space craft, tanks and other implements of destruction trying to shoot you out of the sky. Holding down your fire button fills the screen with a ridiculous amount of lasers, bullets and the like, which you can use to take out enemy crafts and bosses. Ground targets require bombing through use of the left trigger, which has it’s own reticle for target aiming, and you’ll find yourself taking part in many good looking battles full of explosions and gun fire as you traverse through the various environments the game throws at you. Importantly, the actual shoot ’em up gameplay is spot on, with tight controls and consistent mechanics which feel satisfying as you down your thousandth enemy ship.

There are a couple of points which bring down the experience as a whole, though. The first of these is the plot. Fifty years ago, the Zeetnuks conquered an unsuspecting Earth in it’s entirety. A rebellion was formed to take back the planet from these biomechanical alien bastards, and your pilot, Phoenix, is the last DOGOS gunman left at the end of a long war. Chats between you and your handler, Europa, reveal the story during gameplay, and a diary like narrative is thrown over the top too. The plot being unremarkable is of no consequence to me in a classic shoot ’em up, but the fact it’s all there and fully (read: badly) voice acted means OPQAM want us to be on board with it. It’s heavily juxtaposed with the tone of the game though, as you blow away thousands of aliens in classic old school gameplay, and takes itself far too seriously. Something light hearted and gung-ho would have been more preferable to the po-faced antics of Phoenix and Europa.

My second bone of contention is just with the game as a whole. Although you get thrown the occasional curve ball, the canyon runs for example, or boss fights which flip the scrolling to the vertical plane (the difference being only an aesthetic one), you’ll likely grow bored of playing before you reach the end. Both of the ships you get to pick from at the start of your campaign have marginally different stats, but it’s a barely noticeable gameplay difference. You can also upgrade your weapons as you plough through the levels, but as the enemies get harder too, the actual feel of the game doesn’t change dramatically enough to keep you invested.

In essence, what you did on the first level is what you’ll be doing over the next dozen, and the relatively open nature of the levels means genre staples, such as learning wave and attack patterns, are entirely absent. The whole thing just starts to feel a bit of a grind, and the reason is largely because the games unique selling point – it’s open ended levels – works against the addictive mechanics found in more classic shoot ’em ups. The gameplay can be as tight as you like, but if there’s nothing to inspire me to boot the game back up of an evening, well… OPQAM, I’m afraid you’re missing the mark.
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KingsOfDispair
770,681 (513,015)
KingsOfDispair
TA Score for this game: 578
Posted on 06 September 16 at 18:33, Edited on 15 September 16 at 17:16
This review has 4 positive votes and 1 negative vote. Please log in to vote.
Ain’t My First Rodeo
​By Brett Wolfe
Reviewed on Xbox One
Released on September 6th, 2016 for PS4, September 7 for Xbox One & PC
Publisher: OPQAM Developer: OPQAM

Original Post: http://www.player2reviews.com/home/dogos-review

Play another shmup, they said! It will be interesting, they said! It will be really fun, THEY said! Well, guess what? They were right!

Dogos is a shoot ‘em up developed by OPQAM (same as Project Root). The game puts the player in the role as Desmond Phoenix, an exceptional fighter pilot, who is tasked with saving Earth from the Zeetnuks. Near the beginning of his journey Desmond runs into Europa, a tank operator, who needs your help getting out of Zeetnuk territory by forming a rag-tag team to destroy the Zeetnuks. To those unfamiliar, anyone that played Project Root knows that it was not a great game. That title was actually quite underwhelming. Thankfully, Dogos pulls a complete 180 and is exponentially better than its predecessor.

​The gameplay of this title is a three-dimensional shmup in which you maneuver your spaceship through fourteen maze-like levels. Each level varies in level design and contains multiple stages with various paths to finish a portion of the level. Every level also comes with three different optional challenges to complete throughout the duration of the level. These optional objectives range anywhere from finishing the level in a set amount of time, defeating ‘X’ amount of a certain enemy, and finding and defeating a ‘secret’ enemy. The challenge that I noticed popping up the most would be completing the level without losing any lives. These challenges, as far as I am aware at the time of this review, have no correlation with progression in the game except for adding additional objectives. You can beat the level without earning any of them and the next level will unlock. Plus, upgrades for your spaceship come from beating the level as well. Speaking of the spaceship, when you start your save file, you are able to choose between two different ships with varying statistics. Both of the ships control well and do not feel clunky in the slightest. The ships have an air attack, a ground attack, and a special attack. The air weapon starts off as run-of-the-mill pellet that is shot at the enemy ships and has three different upgrades. It is nice to note that these upgrades are separate loadouts that allow you to go back to a previous version of the weapon if the current one is not desirable. The first upgrade just increases the spread of the pellets, the second causes the spread to move in a double-helix formation, and the third one creates a cone. The ground weaponry is a little bit more in depth with its variations. The standard shot is a single missile that arches slightly. The first upgrade changes the weapon to a high power sniper rifle. This will kill the ground targets much faster; however, it has a much longer reload time between shots. The final upgrade is a cluster bomb that shots a large group of bombs at the enemies. This one is nonetheless the best option as it does immense damage and has a pretty fast reload speed. The special attacks in this game are acquired by pickups during the mission and varying between a laser beam, homing missiles, and EMP blast. The laser beam is a powerful beam that travels directly in front of the player and destroys any enemy that it comes into contact with. The homing missiles fire a barrage of missiles that prioritize ground targets, but will attack air units if they are closer. The EMP blast removes all enemy projectiles from the screen. Finally, I would like to touch on the difficulty of this game. Dogos has four different difficulties. The three standard (easy, normal, hard), as well as an additional called minimal. Minimal difficulty states that enemies do minimal damage and the character does extra damage. With this in mind, this game can be a cake-walk due to this difficulty. I personally played on easy and the only issues I would run into would be the insta-death sections by running into walls during the ‘runner’ (ship is always moving) section or the beam puzzles in some of the levels.

 



The visuals of Dogos are nice, but I do not feel that they are anything spectacular. The colors in the game are vibrant and the terrain changes from level to level. These are both extremely nice, but I do not feel that the visuals are the selling point. The ships also provide a couple different paint jobs if you would like to change up your spaceship, which is pretty cool! The soundtrack I feel has the same appeal. I noticed the music playing in the background during the levels were appealing; however, I did feel they got repetitive. In the end, I noticed myself not even listening to the soundtrack as it was not anything that caught my attention.

The replayability in this title is quite minuscule in my opinion. While the game is quite short, the biggest replay factor would be to go back and try and complete all of the side objectives. These would be menial and wouldn’t add that much to the gameplay to keep you intrigued for a larger amount of gameplay. Replaying the entire game again on a higher difficulty would be the best way to stretch the game out, but again it would not add anything new.

All in all, this game is worth the pick-up for anyone that is into the classic shoot ‘em ups or just the causal gamer. The information that was found puts the price point at $12 USD, which I feel is a great price point. The game will last you about 3 to 4 hours playing on easy and is fun for those few hours. Playing the game on a harder difficulty will present you with more playtime; however, for $12 the four hours that this game provides is definitely enough in my opinion. Even though I feel that the soundtrack and visuals are not spectacular, the gameplay makes up for this and would highly recommend picking this one up. It is a fun little title to play and it was enjoyable throughout.

*Note: A copy of the game was provided for the purposes of the review

Final Score: 7.5/10

​+Cheaper Price Point
+Fun Gameplay
+Vibrant Colors
​-Shorter Campaign
-Low Replayability
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